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Au Pair in Tokyo

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The term “au pair” is French for “on equal terms with”, and working as an au pair will usually be an enriching experience since your relationship with your host family will be based on mutual respect and love of children and family life. Au pairs are generally females between 18 and 30, but there is nothing to prevent young men from being au pairs and in fact this is becoming more and more common.

What the au pair must know

As an au pair you do not require any special qualifications (as a nanny would) or any special psychological training. As an au pair your duties will include taking care of the children, perhaps a pet, doing light housework such as vacuuming and dusting, as well as helping with preparation of meals. You will usually have to pay for travel costs to get to your host family and any necessary language classes yourself. Typically you will work 30 to 35 hours a week, probably with some additional babysitting a couple of nights a week too.

Regarding visas, if you are a citizen of Australia, New Zealand, Canada, France, Korea, Germany or the UK and are currently living in your country of citizenship you may apply for a Working holiday visa. In order to be eligible your plan must be to visit Japan primarily for pleasure, and for a specific length of time. You must be between 18 and 30 and shouldn’t have a criminal record or any serious illness. Check with the Japanese Embassy or consulate where you are for more details.

What the family has to do

In exchange for your time your host family should:

  • Give you your meals
  • Give you pocket money of between 200 and 280 euros per month
  • Allow you some days off (this should be agreed upon prior to taking up the position)
  • Insure your belongings under the host family’s household insurance
  • Cover your health insurance costs for the duration of your stay (negotiable)
  • Treat you pretty much like a member of the family, like a big bother or sister to the children (after all you’re not an employee in the strict sense of the word)

There are several very comprehensive websites that can help you if you're interested in doing au pair work in Tokyo:

Update 20/03/2008


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